Table of contents: VOL. 34, NO. 4 - April 1, 2005
COVER STORY
An exclusive MONEY survey reveals just how much we hide about our money. Hint: If you think you have a handle on what your spouse spends or what your friends make, think again. (more)

Features
Some forecasters predict that the baby boomers' impending retirement will ruin your financial future. Here's why they're wrong--and how you can actually profit from the graying of America. (more)
Your peers are worth $217,000. And you? A third save more than 10% a year. Are you keeping up? Join us for a look at the finances of people like you to see where you stand--and where you need to catch up. (more)
Brent Orr and his wife and son have things pretty good. That comes with one huge trade-off, though, which the Orrs hate to talk about--let alone plan for. (more)
The Orrs need to plan for the unthinkable before it happens (more)
The missteps the Orrs made and how to fix them (more)
Forget the political hysteria. The debate over the system's future comes down to four big questions. Focus on them. (more)
We shopped online grocers across the country and found the prices comparable, the convenience unbeatable and the produce better than in the store. What's holding you back? (more)
Letting your job become routine is hazardous to your salary--not to mention job security. Here's how to give your career a jolt. (more)
Home

Does good architecture pay off? L.A. über-broker Mike Deasy knows the answer better than most. (more)
Take the time now to make friends with a local bank. When prices turn, you'll be first in line for bargains. (more)
Buy. Sell. Profit. Repeat. More investors are flipping houses to build wealth. Here's what you can learn from them--even if you're staying put. (more)


How I Did It
Compared with the risk of missing his daughter's childhood, his money gamble was a no-brainer (more)
How Normal are You?
See how you stack up against the Medians. Then do what you can to catch up or get ahead. (more)
Invest

Career change and illness set them back. Now they hope to catch up. (more)
Slowing productivity growth is the stock market's new worry (more)



GE, IBM and Microsoft may no longer dazzle, but they're worth another look (more)
Five years ago, we all believed we'd soon be rich. Let's hope we're wiser today. (more)
After a great run, stocks of small companies look pricey. It may be time to make a trade. (more)
Carly Fiorina's fall from the top of Hewlett-Packard was swift and dramatic. HP must now show it has enough underlying strengths to turn itself around. (more)
When companies get hitched, CEOs get rich. What about you? Follow these rules of marriage. (more)
Plan
Stop fretting about their financial health and just ask them. This is how. (more)
MONEY's ethicists take on the morals of splitting the check and stealing ideas from cold-callers (more)
Boys make money, girls spend it? Make sure your kids aren't getting the wrong message. (more)
As the dreaded 15th of April draws closer, tax your brain, not your assets, with this quiz (more)
Nothing's been easy about the Ashleys' relocation--especially not the money (more)
Average yields have barely budged in response to rising interest rates, but the top deals on taxable savings vehicles have jumped by a quarter of a percentage point or more since last month. Credit-card rates, however, remain largely unchanged. (more)
You can nab great savings rates in cyberspace. But don't ditch your branch bank just yet. (more)
Here are five ways to tell you've reached money maturity (more)
College financial aid packages often fall far short of tuition costs. A pro offers some tips about making up the difference. (more)
We ordinary folks generally do a better job of managing retirement assets than we get credit for (more)
Spend
We tested six jackets to find out which will best fight off those April showers (more)
Four unexpected bargains to grab before someone else does (more)

This hybrid SUV can get an eco-friendly 27 miles per gallon but costs thousands extra. Is it worth it? (more)
Yes. Nine of them, in fact. And they're bringing the best values on their exalted wine lists straight to your kitchen table. (more)
FRIENDS, FOOD AND A NICE SHIRAZ ALL OVER YOUR PANTS. SOUND FAMILIAR? (more)
Start
Just use it. Resale values for big SUVs are shriveling, while pre-owned compacts (yes, compacts) are up. (more)
Uncle Sam's got deficits. You've got deductions. Expect scrutiny. (more)
EXTENDED WARRANTIES: ARE THEY WARRANTED? (more)
Some wireless customer service reps will actually help you--but only if you give them all the facts (more)
And now, a few kind words about our tendency to tarry. Turns out it's not always such a bad thing. (more)
The conservative firebrand has a plan to save American health care (more)
WHO KNEW? THOSE PESKY PRIVACY STATEMENTS HAVE INFO THAT CAN HELP YOU (more)
The economy may not seem so hot, but plenty of good work is out there--for those with the right skills (more)
These six strategies will get you the downtime you need without jeopardizing your career (more)
RECENT ISSUES
FEATURES
To chart a course to your financial goals, it's essential to know your starting point. Take this quiz to see where you are, then follow some simple steps and strategies for getting to the next landmark. |more|